Sunday, September 7, 2014

2014 Week 3 Preview

Los Angeles Vibe vs. Baltimore Kingfishers
IM Andranik Matikozyan (2538) - GM Akshayraj Kore (2543)
FM Konstantin Kavutskiy (2397) - IM Levan Bregadze (2530)
FM Mark Duckworth (2316) - NM Jared Defibaugh (2325)
FM Michael Casella (2262) - NM Andrew Zheng (2208)

Tuesday, 9:00 PM EDT
Time Control: 60 min. with 30 sec. increment

Note: Players in italic have the white pieces.

The Los Angeles Vibe and the Baltimore Kingfishers finally face-off for the first time in the USCL. This meeting took awhile as Los Angeles is playing in its 5th season and Baltimore is in its 10th season. Both teams are seeking the first match points of the season as Los Angeles (0.0-2.0 match record) currently is in 6th place (of 6) in the Western Division while Baltimore (0.0-2.0 match record) is in 5th place (of 6) in the Southern Division. Los Angeles is using the same lineup as last week when they played the Rio Grande Ospreys. Meanwhile, Baltimore's bottom two boards return for a 3rd week in a row while the top two boards continue to shuffle.

Board 1: IM Andranik Matikozyan vs. GM Akshayraj Kore. IM Andranik Matikozyan, a 5-year veteran with Los Angeles, drew last week on Board 1 with the white pieces against GM Anton Kovalyov of the Rio Grande Ospreys. He is (=1 -1) on the season with a 2497 performance rating. His opponent, GM Akshayraj Kore, is making his USCL debut. GM Akshayraj Kore currently attends the University of Maryland: Baltimore County (UMBC).

Board 2: IM Levan Bregadze vs. FM Konstantin Kavutskiy. IM Levan Bregadze is playing in his 3rd USCL season though only his 2nd season for Baltimore. He lost his only game this year in Week 1 on Board 2 with the white pieces against GM Varuzhan Akobian of the St. Louis Arch Bishops. That starts him off with a 2358 performance rating. He will battle FM Konstantin Kavutskiy, who is playing in his 5th USCL and 4th for Los Angeles. FM Kavutskiy lost last week on Board 2 with the black pieces against GM Andrey Stukopin of the Rio Grande Ospreys. He is (=1 -1) this year with a 2387 performance rating. Coincidentally, both of these players spent a season on the St. Louis Arch Bishops roster though not the same season.

Board 3: FM Mark Duckworth vs. NM Jared Defibaugh. FM Mark Duckworth, playing in his 2nd USCL season, is (-2) so far in this season with a 1957 performance rating. He lost last week on Board 3 with the white pieces against WGM Katerina Nemcova of the Rio Grande Ospreys. He will play NM Jared Defibaugh, who is (=1 -1) in his 5th USCL season with a 2151 performance rating. NM Defibaugh lost last week on Board 3 with the white pieces against NM Kevin Mo of the Carolina Cobras.

Board 4: NM Andrew Zheng vs. FM Michael Casella. NM Andrew Zheng is (+2) in the USCL this year. He won last week on Board 4 with the black pieces against FM Robin Cunningham of the Carolina Cobras, giving NM Zheng a 2489 performance rating and 8th place (four-way tie for 6th) in the USCL MVP Leaderboard. Challenging him will be FM Michael Casella, who returned to Los Angeles for a 4th season after taking 2013 off. In his only game this season, FM Casella won last week on Board 4 with the black pieces against Jeffrey Serna of the Rio Grande Ospreys for a 2474 performance rating.

Catch the games live on ICC and let us know your predictions in the 5 polls linked below/shown to the right!
Board 1 Result? | Board 2 Result? | Board 3 Result? | Board 4 Result? | Match Result?

Reposted at: blogs

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